Spanish national coach Paco Antequera is considering offers from pro teams after overseeing a fourth
PICTURE BY TIM DE WAELE After overseeing four world championship victories since becoming Spanish national selector, Paco Antequera is considering quitting the post to take up one of a number pro team management offers he has received. The 40-year-old former BH and Amaya pro is being linked with a move to CV-Kelme. “I feel like I have completed an important cycle as the head of the Spanish team,” Antequera told Marca. He admitted that the offers he has had to move into team management are far more lucrative than his current deal with the Spanish federation. “I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do. First of all I’m going to enjoy this gold medal, and then in the next few days I will decide on my future. There are a lot of things to think over.” Antequera admitted his job has been made a lot easier by the emergence of Oscar Freire, who took the silver medal in the under-23 world road race in 1997, Antequera’s first year in charge of the Spanish team. Back in those years, said Antequera, it was hard enough getting a Spanish team together for the Worlds, now it is hard deciding which riders to pick. “For example, this year it was very hard for me to have to leave out Carlos Sastre,” he told AS. Antequera claimed there is no secret behind Spain’s four recent world title wins, but confessed he learned a lot about this one-off race when he rode it in Chambry, France, in 1989. “I’ve always tried to form a solid group. In 1989 I was told to work hard in the early laps, which I did. But some riders of much bigger stature didn’t push themselves at all, and I’ve tried to avoid this.” If Antequera does step down, he will leave a formidable record. Four gold medals and two bronze in the elite men’s race since 1999 will be a hard act for anyone to follow.